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Leicestershire-born painter Lemuel Francis Abbott (c.1760-1802) ran a London studio specialising in portraits of naval officers and government officials. His most celebrated work was his portrait (based on a drawing taken from life) of Nelson in the undress uniform of a vice admiral. He produced no fewer than three full-length and around 50 half-length versions, and one of the latter, right, from a deceased estate in Henley-on-Thames came onto the market for the first time in 50 years at the May 28 sale with a tempting £3000-5000 estimate.

Abbott’s Nelson portraits are extremely variable in quality, but this unsigned 2ft 5in x 231/2in (73 x 60cm) canvas, provenanced to Thomas George, Earl of Northbrook, was one of the better examples and sold to a London collector at £56,000.

As for gardens, a 101/4 x14in (26 x 36cm) watercolour, Japanese Gardens, The Plesance, Over-Strand by Beatrice Parsons (1870-1955) was offered on May 9. In untouched condition and entered in its original frame from an Oxfordshire deceased’s estate, this attracted interest from seven telephone bidders before falling for £5200 (estimate £1000-1500), one of the higher prices achieved for this flower garden specialist in recent years.